Continuing education provides a unique opportunity for professional growth that benefits you, your patients, and your practice. The top business leaders in the world agree that innovation is one of the most critical aspects of a successful business. By offering the latest techniques and technology, business applications, and management styles that many doctors do not get from daily practice, seminars provide an opportunity to keep skills up-to-date and make it possible to educate and care for patients more effectively.
Why Should You Attend a Seminar?
Practical Learning–Practical learning is the most successful method for mastering clinical technique, and allows for quick implementation of new skills when back in the office. Attending seminars brings you into contact with a professional instructor and other doctors with a wide range of experience. Demonstration and step-by-step instruction are unique benefits of classroom seminars that you will not receive elsewhere.
Practice Management–In addition to clinical technique, your seminar instructor can provide useful information for your practice. It has been said that your practice is only as good as the people you have working for you. An excellent method of developing your staff, attending seminars offers formal instruction on insurance coding and reimbursement, billing, products, and equipment used in patient care. Time and money spent to train your CA is an investment in the practice.
Product Knowledge–Seminars offer opportunities for hands-on instruction and the chance to “test-drive” products and equipment. Vendor representatives are usually available to explain usage, answer questions, and order supplies. This is an excellent chance to compare the features and benefits of similar products to determine the best fit for your practice.
There are many things to consider when shopping for a seminar. It is essential that you find a credible education program with a sponsoring organization that is committed to the advancement of chiropractic and patient care.
The seminar you choose should be delivered by an experienced and well-trained chiropractor with specialties related to the seminar topic. Speaker credentials should be readily available in seminar promotions. The sponsoring organization can help guide you in selecting speakers that will address the appropriate subject matter and learning style for you.
A seminar should be informative and interactive, offering time to ask questions and hands-on demonstrations. Lecture notes prepared by the instructor allow you to give your full attention to the speaker rather than wasting time trying to take thorough notes.
Finally, it is important when implementing your new skills that you be able to access information after the seminar. Find out if post-seminar contact with the speaker is possible. Check into availability of learning aids and references at the seminar or from the sponsoring organization.
How can you maximize the benefit received from attending a seminar?
Actively participate–Attend all sessions and get involved by asking questions and participating in demonstrations.
Use the Tools–Review seminar notes and purchase instructive texts, videos and audio tools, and products offered at the seminar that you will need to support new protocols.
Practice What Your Learn–Put your new knowledge to work as soon as you return to the office.
Attend Refresher Seminars–It may take more than one seminar to become proficient and confident in a new technique. Follow up with a refresher course on the same type as soon as possible to advance your skills even further.
Offer a Press Release–Announce to your community that you have attended a post-grad seminar and include information on the subject matter; whether it be a new technique or product offering, special populations or sports oriented training, you never know where your next patient may come from.
License Renewal Seminars should provide practical information that chiropractors can put to immediate use in their practices. Look for ones that are designed to improve your techniques, build your practice, and enhance your care. Education is an investment that will pay off through a more successful practice and healthier patients.
Robert S. Striker, DC, MBA is a cum laude graduate of New York Chiropractic College. He earned an MBA from the Smeal College of Business at Pennsylvania State University with concentrations in Product and Market Development and Corporate Innovation. Dr. Striker currently serves as the Director of Marketing and Communications at Foot Levelers, Inc.